[Ads-l] Pluralizing acronyms

Barretts Mail mail.barretts at GMAIL.COM
Sat Jan 6 07:22:01 UTC 2018

I have to deal with technical vocabulary, and it feels odd making plurals out of initialisms that I’m not used to. UE (user equipment) becomes UEs even though “equipment” is a non-count noun, for example. 

Here are a couple of considerations:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acronym#Representing_plurals_and_possessives <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acronym#Representing_plurals_and_possessives>

I think f-to-v rule is fossilized (c.f., https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/English_plurals#Near-regular_plurals <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/English_plurals#Near-regular_plurals>), so new words don’t take it. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dwarf_(Middle-earth)#Spelling_%22Dwarves%22 <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dwarf_(Middle-earth)#Spelling_"Dwarves"> for Tolkien’s usage.

Benjamin Barrett
Formerly of Seattle, WA

> On 5 Jan 2018, at 23:12, Shawnee Moon <moon.shawnee at GMAIL.COM> wrote:
> I’m assuming you have heard the word “MILF” by now.
> It’s pronounced and used as a word, like many acronyms. I’m just curious, if there is more than one mother you, um, desire, would MILF be pluralized like the words shelf, self and elf, with VES replacing the F at the end? One MILF, two MILVES...
> Just a nonsense question, but one of the gazillion things I ponder when otherwise idle.
> Mailed from the Moon 🌜
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

More information about the Ads-l mailing list